Laura Bates’s book signing in Hampstead

Last Wednesday evening I visited Waterstone’s bookshop in Hampstead, where Laura Bates was due to give a talk and sign copies of her whine book, Everyday Sexism. I arrived 15 minutes early, bought a ticket, and noted the staff had put out 50-60 chairs. Half were already occupied, mostly by women in their late teens or 20s, the remainder by older women and a few hapless-looking men.

I’d taken along 50 copies of a flyer to hand out, containing the proof that Bates’s repeated claim that, ‘Over two women per week are killed by partners or former partners in the UK’ is false, and that her continuing dogged repetition of the claim after we’d sent her contradictory evidence (government statistics) make her an indisputable liar, a worthy winner of our latest Lying Feminist of the Month award.

The front row was fully occupied by young women, so I walked along the row, saying:

Hi! Big fan of Laura Bates! Can I give you one of my handouts?

The reaction was positive, and it wasn’t until I’d handed out a number of flyers that the penny started to drop. I handed out flyers to other people, and before long the whining started. In one row of seven 20-something women, one of them said, ‘You claim Laura Bates is a liar. What proof do you have?’ I replied, ‘Well, the proof is in the flyer, but I have a copy with me of the ONS report which proves she’s a liar. Would you like to see the relevant section of the report?’ She replied, ‘No thanks!’, handed the flyer back to me, and the women with her did likewise, in a suitably anxious sheep-like fashion. It was the phenomenon we’re so familiar with, feminists being unwilling to engage with facts which prove their narratives to be lies. For these women, feelings trump facts every time. They might as well have said to me:

Laura’s nice, she’s on the telly and the radio all the time, so she can’t be lying, you’re a bad man for saying it’s even possible! I’m grateful to her for explaining why my life is a complete mess – sexism!!!

One cackling young crone claimed loudly that I had no evidence Bates was lying. I offered to show her the proof – the ONS report – and her cackling became louder. I asked her why she was cackling, a question which appeared to confuse her. I was reminded why we’d presented Laura Bates’s defenders our latest Gormless Feminists of the Month award. Some of these women aren’t… er… let’s be kind… well. Bats in the belfry, and all that.

I got a warmer reception from others, including a 30-something French woman who was prepared to engage in a rational discussion, to my amazement. The men in the audience were predictably hopeless. Those who were with their female partners looked like rabbits dazed by car headlights when I offered them the flyer, while two of three men sitting on their own refused to accept one. I said to one of them, ‘Aren’t you interested that the person you’ve paid to hear talk tonight has been shown publicly to be a liar, but won’t retract her lie?’ He was at a loss for anything to say, and shifted on his seat uncomfortably.

Just before the scheduled start time, two young female members of staff came to me and asked me to leave, saying Laura Bates was nervous, as she’d received death threats. I said I was the last person in the world likely to threaten Laura Bates, as she’s such an asset to J4MB – a feminist who lies publicly, then lies publicly about having lied publicly. But they were politely insistent, so I left. I couldn’t see Bates, who was presumably keeping out of the way lest my shadow fall on her, leading to her instant collapse and death.

We look forward to attending other public events where Bates and other prominent feminists are appearing. No longer can they expect to attend events without being publicly exposed as the liars they all are.

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